Monday, January 08, 2007

Two Immigrants

The world is full of good blogs. Just found one called the Vol Abroad - "The rantings and musings of a Tennessee expat and long term London resident.". Not sure that I would agree much with her politically (someone who includes Harry's Place and Devil's Kitchen in their blogroll is going to be tricky to classify). But she has some nice cat photos.

One poignant post
made such an impression on me that I thought I'd quote it in full:

Yesterday, while I was out and about I was offered bootleg DVDs by a middle aged Chinese man. One of them was Apocalypto, which tempted me as I'm curious about the film but don't want to give that Mel Gibson any of my money.

But I couldn't be sure the DVD would be of any quality or indeed would even have Apocalypto content on the disk. And to be honest, I didn't want to encourage the vile trade. And it wasn't a vile trade in intelllectual property that concerned me, but the trafficking of humans.

The man selling the DVDs - he looked so sad and tired and weighed down. He had a look in his eyes that one rarely sees in the west these days (some of those 1930s photos of sharecroppers had it). He was almost certainly a slave, working to pay off passage to the first world.

I declined the DVDs. I looked him in the eyes as I did it. I hope I did it in a nice enough way.

1 comment:

Tristan said...

I hate the adverts on the London buses at the moment which equate buying pirated DVDs with people trafficking...

If we had sensible immigration laws (ie free immigration with no benefits until you've worked for a sensible amount of time - beyond emergency care that is) then we wouldn't have the problem...

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